Hello! I hope you don’t mind a guest post today, but I can’t hold on to this post much longer—it’s a gem! It encompasses everything I love about traveling, so I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. I’ll be back in a couple days with some pictures of Venice (we took a day trip there yesterday)! Ciao ~Jess
Hello world! My name is Casey and I am a proud Air Force wife currently living in Germany! My handsome hubby David, also known as D, and I moved across the pond just two short months ago. My blog, We Took The Road Less Traveled, is devoted to chronicling my life as a MilSpouse and new our European adventure!
Half-timbered houses adorned with boxes filled with brightly colored flowers. Cobblestone streets lined with bakeries, Christmas shops, and charming al fresco dining. I basically melted into my seat as we drove through the fortress walls. We couldn’t have picked a better place to celebrate 4 lovely years of wedded bliss! As we made our way along the cobblestone streets to our hotel, I couldn’t help but notice that both of our tummies were rumbling. Food was going to be at the top of our agenda for the evening, and I knew the perfect place to grab a bite to eat. Little did I know that we’d be getting more than just a tasty Swabian meal…we were about to have one of the most memorable experiences thus far of our stay in Germany.
As we walked down the stairs to the cellar where the restaurant was housed, we noticed one essential part of the restaurant missing. Customers. The place was absolutely empty, except for one man standing behind the bar cutting radishes. I thought this has got to be the infamous owner, Harry, who I’ve read so much about. Instead of calling him by name (at the risk of sounding like a complete stalker weirdo), I said hello to get his attention and he promptly sat us down at one of the 12 empty tables. We ordered our drinks, a glass of Franconian white wine for me and the usual Hefeweizen for D, and pursued the menu. Everything sounded so delicious, but we finally settled on the traditional Spätzel and Schnitzel for an authentic German meal. Harry came back over, took our food orders and then retreated back to his spot behind the bar. He began by preparing our salads, which were divine, and then he disappeared into the back of the restaurant to make our main course.
He proceeded to tell us how German’s signal the end of part of a meal (by placing your fork and knife parallel to each other on your plate) and how basically everyone else in the world doesn’t follow the same tradition making it hard to know when to serve the next course. I looked down at our plates and we both had carelessly crossed our fork and knife on our plates. We literally never do that. Harry then pointed out that this signaled our intention to take a break and enjoy more salad later. Seriously? What are the odds that we would place our utensils in the wrongest spot possible? I’m sure my face turned a bright shade of red with embarrassment because Harry let out a boisterous laugh and said he was only picking! WHEW! The last thing I wanted to do is piss off the owner of an empty restaurant in a foreign country.
My tip to all of you travelers…get in with the locals. It can pay off big and quite possibly be among some of the most memorable parts of your trip abroad. If you ever eat at Burkerkeller in Rothenburg, make sure you ask Harry about his “special stein.” I promise you won’t be disappointed! And Harry, if you ever read this, thanks for the laughs and your heartwarming hospitality. I now love Germany more than ever.